Service Tips

Reducing the Risk of Manual Material Handling

Back injuries account for one of every five injuries or illnesses in the workplace.  Around 80% of these injuries occur to the lower back and are associated with manual material handling tasks. Oftentimes we get drawn into the “let’s get ’er done” attitude with many material handling tasks. The work does need to be completed, but taking a couple of seconds to determine the best way to do the job may prevent weeks of back pain.

When you lift…

- DO -
Plant your feet firmly – get a stable base
Keep the load close to your body
Bend at your knees – not your waist
Tighten your abdominal muscles to support your back
Keep your back upright – keep it in its natural posture
Use your leg muscles as you lift
Get a good grip – use both hands
Lift steadily and smoothly without jerking
Breathe. If you must hold your breath to lift it, then it is too heavy

- DO NOT -
Lift from the floor
Lift loads across obstacles
Twist and lift
Lift from an uncomfortable posture
Fight to recover a dropped object
Lift with one hand (unbalanced)
Lift while reaching or stretching
Hold your breath while lifting – Get Help

Begin each material handling task with the end in mind:  Where are you going to move it? Do you have a good grip? Is there a clear path?

Let’s work together to make Georgia a safer place to work!

Workplace Safety Tips From DOAS Risk Management Services

  

State Employee Recognition Week Tips

Recognition is a powerful motivator, and it contributes to higher employee morale, increases organizational productivity, and aids in recruitment and retention.

State Employee Recognition Week is an opportunity to show appreciation to your employees for their dedication to public service. State Employee Recognition Day is also an excellent time to spotlight the achievements and contributions of state employees in the workplace and in our communities. The image of state employees is strengthened when citizens see people they know, who happen to be state employees, working to better their communities. Publicizing the good things state employees are doing can go a long way in educating the public and making employees feel appreciated and valued.

This State Employee Recognition Week Guide provides specific information on preparing for and implementing the day in your agency. Planning early allows you to take an active role in recognizing those who do a great job for your agency and your customers every day!

In a time when budgets are tight, special activities may seem too expensive, but there are several low cost, no cost activities that agencies can do. Included in this packet are recognition ideas that can be tailored to all situations and needs, so feel free to use the ones that suit your agency’s celebration.

National Severe Weather Preparedness Week

PreparednessMonth

Last year, there were seven weather and climate disaster events across the United States with losses exceeding $1 billion each. These events included five severe weather and tornado events, a major flood event, and the western drought/heat wave. Overall, these events killed 109 people and had significant economic effects on the areas impacted.

All of these events highlight the need for emergency preparation — highlighted by events like the National Severe Weather Preparedness Week, which runs from March 2-8, 2014.

Being prepared for severe weather hazards does not have to be complicated or expensive. A few simple steps to prepare and take action could help save lives anywhere – at home, in schools, and in the workplace before tornadoes and severe thunderstorms and extreme weather strikes.

Know your risk. Take action.
Severe weather knows no boundaries and affects every individual. Being prepared and acting quickly could be a matter of survival. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) have the responsibility of handling Federal and State emergency events. Ready Georgia,  GEMA’s statewide emergency preparedness campaign, offers tools that residents can use to create an emergency supply kit, develop a communications plan and stay informed about potential threats. Ready Georgia’s interactive website, www.ready.ga.gov, provides detailed information on Georgia-specific emergency preparedness and allows users to create a personal profile and receive a customized checklist and family communications plan.

Employers can use the Ready Your Business guide to create custom contingency plans, and children can visit the ReadyKids page for age-appropriate information, videos and games. For preparedness on the go, families can also download Ready Georgia’s free mobile app at http://www.ready.ga.gov/mobileapp to learn how to prepare for emergencies, create family communications plans and more.

Have you prepared an emergency plan for your home and your agency location? If so, is it up to date?  More than half the households in the United States have no emergency plan. GEMA and FEMA offer a lot of information to help develop a plan on how to deal with emergencies.

Ready.GA.gov offers some of the following guidelines for homes:

  • Supply Checklist for Severe Weather emergencies
    • Do you have a stored water supply of at least 3 gallons per day per person?
    • Do you have a 3 day Non-Perishable food supply for your family?
    • Do you have a manual can opener, batteries, flashlights and a NOAA alert radio?
    • Do you have a fully stocked First Aid kit?
    • Are you prepared for a cold weather emergency if the power goes out?
  • Fire & Medical emergency preparation for your location or home:
    • Are there two ways out of your home or office?
    • Have you established a meeting point once you have evacuated?
    • Do you have a First Aid kit?  Are Emergency numbers posted?
    • Do you know who has First Aid training at your location?
  • Flooding preparation:
    • Do you know what items you want to take with you during an evacuation?
    • Do you have emergency contact numbers in case roads are flooded in your area or at your location?

Of course these are the short list of items.  A few minutes of preparation can save a life or make you far more comfortable in case of an emergency situation.